Office of Public Affairs and Communications


Peter Hong
Peter Y. Hong

Associate Vice President for Public Affairs and Communications

(909) 621-8099

Peter Hong is Associate Vice President of Public Affairs and Communications.

He oversees all aspects of the department. Hong joined Claremont McKenna from California State University, Los Angeles, where he was Deputy Chief of Staff and Director of Strategic Initiatives. He has been a top-level aide to Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas and served as transition chief of staff for Los Angeles County Supervisor and former U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis. For 20 years, Hong was a reporter in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., for the Los Angeles Times, the Washington Post, and Businessweek Magazine. He holds an A.B. in Politics from Occidental College, where he was a Thomas J. Watson Fellow.

Joann Young
Joann D. Young

Executive Director of Public Affairs and Lewis Community Impact Fellow

(909) 607-9246

Joann D. Young is Executive Director of Public Affairs and Lewis Community Impact Fellow.

Before joining Claremont McKenna College, Young served as Communications Manager at Auto Club Speedway. Prior to the Auto Club Speedway, Young took on media relations, marketing, and producing at various radio broadcast properties including the Disney-owned ABC Radio Networks, the Los Angeles Dodgers Radio Broadcast, and The Tavis Smiley Show on public radio.

Young earned a B.A. in Criminology, Law and Society and a B.A. in Asian American Studies from the University of California, Irvine. She was also a Fellow with the Public Policy and International Affairs Fellowship Program at the University of Maryland, College Park.

Thomas Rozwadowski
Thomas Rozwadowski

Associate Director of Public Affairs and Communications

(909) 621-8582

Thomas Rozwadowski is Associate Director of Public Affairs for the Office of Public Affairs and Communications.

Before joining Claremont McKenna College, he served as senior editor and writer at Carleton College in Northfield (Minn.). While there, Rozwadowski crafted feature stories for the alumni magazine and developed strategies for print, web, marketing, and social media platforms.

Prior to working in higher ed communications, Rozwadowski was an editor and program manager at ThreeSixty Journalism, a nonprofit for low income high school students of color hosted at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul (Minn.). A Wisconsin native, he spent the first decade of his professional career as a features reporter and online editor at his hometown newspaper, the Green Bay Press-Gazette.

Rozwadowski received his B.A. in Communications and English from St. Norbert College (Wis.).


Kate Canada Obregon
Kate Canada Obregon

Associate Director, Web and Digital Marketing

(909) 607-7440

Kate is the Associate Director for Communications and Digital Marketing.

She joins Claremont McKenna College after heading up research, strategy and creative services at the award-winning agency Oishii Creative.

Kate holds a PhD in Political Science and taught many courses at USC through the Annenberg School of Communications, Digital Media Program and Thematic Option University Honors Program.

Chris Watts
Chris Watts

Director of Communication for Athletics Advancement/Staff Writer

(909) 607-9981

Chris Watts is Director of Communication for Athletics Advancement and a Staff Writer in the Office of Public Affairs and Communications at Claremont McKenna College. Watts transitioned into this position after nearly four years as the Director of Athletics Communication for CMC and CMS Athletics, and its 21 NCAA Division III varsity teams.

Prior to coming to Claremont in November of 2012, Watts served as the recreational sports manager and sports information assistant in the Chapman University athletic department. He also worked as the media relations assistant for the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes, a minor league baseball team in Southern California.

He received a B.A. in Mass Communication from Principia College (Ill.) in 2008 and his M.A. in Sport Management from the University of San Francisco in 2011.

Martin Beck
Martin Beck

Web Content Developer

(909) 607-9245

Martin Beck is Web Content Developer for the Office of Public Affairs and Communications.

Previously, Beck covered the social media industry for Marketing Land and Search Engine Land, and was the social media and reader engagement editor for the Los Angeles Times. Beck, who started his career at the Times as a sportswriter and copy editor, has a masters degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and bachelors degrees in political science and economics from UC Irvine.

Tatiana Shabelnik
Tatiana Shabelnik

Interactive Web Services Manager

(909) 607-2131

Tatiana Shabelnik, M.L.I.S, is Web Interactive Services Manager for the Office of Public Affairs and Communications.

Shabelnik served eleven years as a Web Manager for Whittier College and four years as a Web Team Manager and Reference and Instructional Services Librarian for Michigan Technological University. She also taught library and information science at the University of Culture in Belarus for five years. In 2010-2011, Shabelnik served as President of the Rotary Club of Pico Rivera, and in 2011 represented Rotary International and Rotary District 5300 at the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade.

She received her B.A. and master’s degrees in Library and Information Science at the Belorussian University of Culture, and a master’s degree in Library and Information Science and Certificate of Advanced Studies from Louisiana State University. She also completed coursework in Rhetoric and Technical Communication at Michigan Technological University for its Ph.D. program.

Anibal Ortiz
Anibal Ortiz

Photographer / Videographer

(909) 621-8321

Anibal Ortiz is Photographer and Videographer of Public Affairs and Communications.

Before joining Claremont McKenna College, Ortiz worked as a visual journalist in Albany, Ore., where he covered news, sports, and feature stories for the Albany Democrat-Herald and the Corvallis Gazette-Times. A California native, Ortiz began his career in Southern California as a photographer at the Orange County Register.

Ortiz earned a B.A. in Communications with an emphasis in Journalism from California State University, Fullerton.

Valerie Ramos
Valerie Ramos

Public Affairs and Communications Coordinator

(909) 607-2218

Valerie Ramos is Public Affairs and Communications Coordinator for the Office of Public Affairs and Communications.

Previously Valerie worked at UC Riverside, where she was an administrative assistant for UCR International Education Programs. At UCR, Valerie also assisted her department with social media content, photography, video production and branded graphics. Valerie holds a bachelor's degree in French language and literature from UC Riverside.

Susan Price
Susan Price

Assistant Director of Public Affairs

(909) 607-6128

Susan is a journalist who has specialized in covering business, finance and entrepreneurship.

Before joining CMC, she was a freelance writer and editor whose work has appeared in Forbes, Fortune, The Atlantic, and Fast Company, among others. Susan has been an editor at publications including BusinessWeek, Money, and Individual Investor, and has created content for numerous startups and Fortune 100 companies. Prior to becoming a journalist, Susan was Associate Director for Public Affairs at Barnard College.

She has a B.S. in Public Policy from Duke University and a M.A. in Journalism from New York University.

Grace Comisso
Grace Comisso

Art Director

(909) 607-6128

Grace Comisso is Art Director for the Office of Public Affairs and Communications.

She creatively designs, develops and produces CMC publications to communicate clear, consistent messaging for the College.

Before joining CMC, Comisso managed her own design studio and worked as an art director for various clients, ad agencies and in-house corporate design departments. Her design career spans more than two decades in Pennsylvania, New York, and now in California, where she has created marketing materials for education, entertainment, finance, healthcare, human resources and real estate industries.

She studied Visual Communications at The Art Institute of Pittsburgh.